Industry News

“OK Now You Know” Podcast Launches on June 10

Monday (6/10) is the launch of the new show, “OK Now You Know,” hosted by six-time New York Timesim bestselling author Joe Garner. The podcast is being co-executive produced by Paul Bahr of Peachtree Sound and Ron Hartenbaum of WYD Media. Garner says, “In each episode, we explore the hidden aspects of everyday life. From why popcorn pops to the science behind your favorite songs. ‘OK Now You Know’ offers a fresh look at the world around us.” Hartenbaum adds, “We’re not just sharing information; we’re inspiring curiosity. ‘OK Now You Know’ makes every day a chance to learn something new.”

Industry News

SiriusXM Debuts “Mediaite’s Press Club”

SiriusXM announces the launch of “Mediaite’s Press Club” in collaboration with Mediaite.com. Debuting tomorrow (6/8), Mediaite editor-in-chief Aidan McLaughlin hosts and executive produces that airs onim Saturdays at 10:00 am ET on SiriusXM’s bipartisan P.O.T.U.S. channel. This show will contain major interviews and showcase conversations and debates with Mediaite writers and editors, along with top reporters from various outlets. These roundtable discussions will cover the intersection of media and politics, the inner workings of the media world, and the biggest industry stories of the week. The inaugural episode features an in-depth interview with ABC News anchor George Stephanopoulos.

Industry News

Edison: Comedy is Top Podcast Genre

Edison Research reports that according to its Edison Podcast Metrics for the first quarter of 2024,im Comedy is the top genre among weekly podcast listeners age 13+. Edison says 19 genres have been identified as having at least one percent reach among weekly podcast listeners aged 13 and older in Q1 2024. Edison defines a podcast’s genre using its primary genre in Apple Podcasts. Society & Culture (#2) moved ahead of News (#3) while True Crime followed at #4 and Sports came in at #5. See the complete chart here.

Industry News

iHeartMedia First Quarter Revenue Dips 1.5%

iHeartMedia reports that its revenue for the first quarter of 2024 was $799 million, a decline of 1.5% from the same period in 2023, and in line with the company’s guidance. The company posts a net loss of $18.1 million, a dramatic reduction from the $222 million loss it reported in Q1 of 2023. The company’s Broadcast Radio segment revenue was $359.3 million, a decline of 6.2% from Q1 2023 and networksim revenue was $102 million, down 5.5% from the same period a year ago. The company’s Digital Audio Group revenue was $239 million, up 7% over Q1 2023. Breaking that segment down, Digital (excluding Podcast) revenue was $148.3 million (up 1.2%), and Podcast revenue was $90.6 million (up 18%). iHeartMedia chairman and CEO Bob Pittman says, “We’re pleased to report our first quarter of year-over-year Adjusted EBITDA growth in five quarters, driven by the substantial sequential year-over-year improvement in the performance of all our segments: the Multiplatform Group, the Digital Audio Group, and the Audio and Media Services Group – with the Digital Audio Group hitting its best Q1 EBITDA margin ever. Additionally, our Q1 results were in line with our previously provided Adjusted EBITDA and Revenue guidance ranges. Although the marketplace continues to be dynamic, we continue to see meaningful opportunities for growth in our businesses and we remain confident in 2024 as a recovery year.”

Industry News

New RAB CEO Appears on “Chachi Loves Everybody” Podcast

The latest duo of podcasts hosted by Benztown president Dave “Chachi” Denes have dropped. Joining Denes on the “Chachi Loves Everybody” podcast are new Radio Advertising Bureau CEO Mike Hulvey and Epic Media founder Brad Samuel. The two programs were recorded at the recent 2024 NAB Show in Las Vegas. Listen to them here.

Industry News

Audacy Sports Debuts

Audacy announces that it is launching Audacy Sports, a move that will aggregate its broadcast, digital, and podcast inventory under the banner that “unleashes a market-differentiating opportunity for advertisers to connect with 43 million monthly listeners across the company’s sports portfolio while continuing to build equity in the Audacy brand.” The company says this follows its recent unveiling of Audacy Podcasts, a move to consolidate its podcast production and go-to-market monetizationim approach. Audacy SVP of sports monetization Lee Davis states, “We’re thrilled to bring together our unrivaled sports portfolio under Audacy Sports. Consolidating our cross-platform sellable assets under one name creates a compelling opportunity for brands to connect with listeners at scale – through our digital and broadcast network platforms or locally, through our owned sports stations – wherever and whenever they tune into Audacy content.” Audacy Sports is powered by the company’s 40 owned-and-operated all-sports stations and affiliates, 160 sports streaming channels on the Audacy app, a sports podcast network featuring over 600 titles and live events, 150 professional and collegiate teams – including play-by-play broadcasts, the Infinity Sports Network (formerly CBS Sports Radio) and BetQL Network.

Industry Views

NAB Show: Directing Real People on Camera

By Holland Cooke
Consultant 

imIf you’re looking to jump-start – or optimize – your video interview technique, this session alone was worth the trip to Las Vegas. Washington-based video content strategist/producer/interviewer Amy DeLouise and cinematographer/gaffer Anne Saul delivered a soup-to-nuts “Boot Camp” session to an overflow crowd.

For the decks, hit AmyDeLouise.com, click Slide Decks then Real People Boot Camp, parts 1 and 2. You can devour an impressive tutorial of production techniques, including specifics about equipment and how-to-use-it.

Even if you’re just doing radio or podcast interviews, Amy offered some useful tips:

“Nervous Speaker Technique”: Before the interview, chat ‘em up, perhaps asking for a personal anecdote, i.e., “Why did you decide to become a _____?” If you are shooting video, do the B-roll and walk-and-talk shots first. Then, when they’ve gotten used to you and the set-up, start the interview. “Worst case: Let them take a break, ‘Go do some emails,’ then resume in 20 minutes.”

“The Contradict Me Technique”: Because “some speakers are very reserved, they won’t show emotion unless they feel they need to correct your misunderstanding.” So, bait them: “Isn’t A.I. just a gimmick?”

“The Shorter Answer Technique”: Some speakers have a LOT to say,’ so Amy says let them get it out of their system, THEN ask “How would I explain this to my children?”

“Two Do-Over Techniques”: If you want to re-ask a question, fib: “The part about X was really great. But we had a little bit of noise, do you mind if I ask you that one more time?” Or “lean in as if you didn’t quite hear the answer, and they will repeat it;” a ploy which “only works for the last part of what they said.”

“The Finish My Sentence Technique”: Amy says “When all else fails, ask ‘Finish this sentence: The biggest value we bring at ABC Company is…’” 

Holland Cooke (HollandCooke.com) is a consultant working at the intersection of broadcasting and the Internet. He is the author of “Close Like Crazy: Local Direct Leads, Pitches & Specs That Earned the Benjamins,” and  The Local Radio Advantage: Your 4-Week Tune-In Tune-Up,” and “Confidential: Negotiation Checklist for Weekend Talk Radio.” Follow HC on Twitter @HollandCooke and connect on LinkedIn.

Industry News

Formal Campaign Finance Complaint Filed Over Ted Cruz Podcast

Two organizations – End Citizens United and the Campaign Legal Center – have filed a formal campaign finance complaint with the Federal Elections Commission alleging that U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) may have improperly directed iHeartMedia to contribute $630,000 to the Truth and Courage PAC, whoseim purpose is to ensure Cruz’s reelection. The amount donated would exceed the $5,000 ceiling on solicitation of funds for a super PAC. The Texas Tribune reports that the terms of iHeartMedia’s payments are unclear because the company’s agreement with Cruz for distributing his podcast is not public, hence the complaint seeking an investigation. However, the complaint asserts “the payments were improperly reported as ‘other receipts’ rather than campaign contributions. ‘Other receipts’ is generally reserved for interest or income on assets already owned by a PAC.” The complaint continues, “By soliciting or directing $630,850.08 of iHeartMedia’s corporate funds to or on behalf of TCP in connection with his 2024 election, Cruz appears to have brazenly violated these federal campaign finance laws.” See the Texas Tribune story here.

Industry News

Bold Gold Media Group Unveils Bold Gold Studios

Bold Gold Media Group announces the grand opening of Bold Gold Studios – a brand-new, state-of-the-art audio and video podcast and recording studio located in the newly renovated historic Liberty Theater, on Main Street in Liberty, New York. The company says that in addition to providing interested podcasters and content creators a place to make their audio and video magic, this studio will also serveim as a satellite radio studio for Bold Gold Media’s four local broadcast radio stations, including news/talk WVOS-AM/W223DB “Catskills News Talk 92.5 & 94.9.”  Bold Gold Studios will be available for lease opportunities, and offers brand new professional audio and video recording gear, with experts available to assist in recording, producing, and even marketing branded multi-media podcast or A/V productions. The company will hold a grand opening celebration on April 19. Bold Gold New York general manager Dawn Ciorciari says, “We are grateful to Bruce Davidson at the Liberty Theater for partnering with Bold Gold Media to create and manage this state-of-the-art studio in his historic building.  This studio will extend Bold Gold Media’s reach in Sullivan and the Catskills and serve as a new professional space for audio and video content creators.”

Industry News

TALKERS News Notes

The internet TV talk show “Jim Peters At Night” is preparing to broadcast its 100th episode live this evening (3/25). The program is broadcast live via video Mondays through Thursdays at 11:00 pm ET on six popular online platforms. The featured guest for the 100th installment will be Dr. Murray Sabrin, professor emeritus of economics and finance at Ramapo College in New Jersey.

Audio sales firm AdLarge welcomes “Stupid Things for Love” to its podcast lineup. The company says, “Through candid discussions, host Scott Campbell, an internationally acclaimed tattoo artist, creates a deeply empathetic and secure environment for guests, inviting them to share their vulnerabilities and intimate narratives, regardless of their level of fame or recognition. From personal struggles to triumphant moments, ‘Stupid Things for Love’ offers an unassuming platform for real people to connect and relate.”

Industry News

Edison Research: Which Podcasts Women Listen To

Based on data from Edison Research’s Q4 2023 Share of Ear study, the podcast most listened to by women (13+) is audiochuck’s “Crime Junkie,” hosted by Ashley Flowers and Brit Prawat. Edison notes, “Podcasts with women hosts take five of the top 10 spots, including “Crime Junkie,” “The Daily”im with Michael Barbaro and Sabrina Tavernise (#4), “Call Her Daddy” with Alex Cooper (#5), “Morbid” with Alaina Urquhart and Ash Kelley (#7), and “My Favorite Murder” with Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark (#8). And Dateline NBC’s (#3) 20-year veteran Andrea Canning is part of the team of correspondents on the true crime pod.” However, women to listen to male-hosted shows as the study reveals “The Joe Rogan Experience” was #2 on the most recent chart. “New Heights with Jason and Travis Kelce” was #6 on the chart and was lifted to this “new height” by the obvious Taylor Swift connection.

Industry News

TALKERS News Notes

Condolences to WBEN-AM, Buffalo afternoon drive host Tom Bauerle on the passing of his mother Dorothy, who died on March 6 at age 90. Bauerle had been hosting his program from his mother’s home while he served as her round-the-clock caregiver. Bauerle says his listeners may have been aware that he was working from his mother’s home, but he didn’t make a big deal out of it. He tells TALKERS, “I just very much believe that when practicable it is a child’s duty to take care of their parent instead of putting them in a nursing home, and in my case it was practicable, so I did it.”

iHeartPodcasts and “Countdown With Keith Olbermann,” will produce a live streaming edition of the program this evening after the conclusion of President Joe Biden’s State of the Union Address. The stream will move on iHeartRadio’s Twitch channel and Keith Olbermann’s YouTube channel.

Sheri Lynch’s “True Weird Stuff” podcast will focus on female subjects in recognition of Women’s History Month. Lynch says, “I’ve spent my whole life struggling to NOT talk about all the weird things that fascinate me and often make other people uncomfortable, such as reincarnation, near-death experiences, aliens, or the idea that reality is a simulation. It’s hard masking so much weird. ‘The True Weird Stuff’ podcast is where I can bring all the quirky, cryptic, creepy, odd and just plain weird together in one place and share them with my listeners.”

Industry Views

Pending Business: Baked-In?

By Steve Lapa
Lapcom Communications Corp
President

imIs that host read you are pitching “baked-in?”

No, I am not talking baked in the content, as in before the break with all the produced commercials. I am talking about “baked-in” the audio that will live on as long as that show is available.

Still confused? You should ask someone who has handled an actual audio podcast avail. Some advertisers and their ad agencies are shaping the future and “baked-in” is a fundamental element of the new-think that is pushing the needle on podcast CPM, while your team struggles to compete for low CPM based on old school models that are dropping like flies.

The good news is that host read is still the gold standard that moves the listener to action. The bad news is radio station sellers are hanging onto older strategies that have little room in a future filled with millions of audio podcasts that contain no music and feature comedy, news, talk, opinion, lifestyle, sports, politics, entertainment, financial, medical, legal, self-help, religion, even foreign language – as in nothing but the human voice and a little production.

Sound familiar? I call it the great sales equalizer: the host read.

So how can this magical host read have such a dramatic impact in this super-crowded environment, yet be so underappreciated on radio stations coast to coast? Let us look at the three legs of the sales stool that have never changed.

1. The seller. Most radio sellers are presenting the host read the same way they did since their first order. What is new, different, and exciting in the way you present your talent today?

2. The audience. Size matters, intimacy matters, performance matters. Can you demonstrate how your host-audience relationship fulfills those criteria and generates a response for your advertisers?

3. The inventory. Why do we still have the same number of host reads in every hour of a show? Anyone have the courage to vary the inventory or pricing throughout a show?

The podcast world is leading the way to a future filled with:

1. Baked-In host reads.
2. Pre-roll, mid-roll, and post-roll price differences.
3. Commercial inventory limits.
4. Impression delivery options that demonstrate clear accountability.

There is a bright future in audio sales that will look and feel different from what we take for granted today. Make sure you are on the right side of the wave and not stuck in the mud.

Steve Lapa is the president of Lapcom Communications Corp. based in Palm Beach Gardens, FL. Lapcom is a media sales, marketing, and development consultancy. Contact Steve Lapa via email at: Steve@Lapcomventures.com.

Industry News

TALKERS News Notes

“The Stephen A. Smith Show” moves from Audacy’s Cadence 13 to iHeartMedia’s iHeartPodcast Network for distribution. The show is produced by Smith’s Mr. SAS with Smith serving as executive producer.

Hannah Brummer joins TM Studios’ affiliate relations department serving under senior affiliate relations director Steve Kaufman.

Baltimore Public Media officially launched yesterday (2/26). The move unites radio stations WYPR and WTMD under a single, dynamic umbrella branded “Your Public Media” more than three years after the November 2021 acquisition of WTMD-FM from Towson University. Currently serving as president and GM for the company is former CBS News Radio vice president and general manager Craig Swagler.

Beasley Media Group promotes Luis “Speedy Jr” Gonzalez to director of video and audio production for its Tampa Bay cluster.

Industry News

Veritonic and Realeyes Unveil Audio Attention Report

Audio analytics and research platform Veritonic, in partnership with computer vision and attention AI company Realeyes, publishes their first Veritonic Audio Attention Report that analyzes effective audio advertising. The report provides data-backed insight into the importance of creative efficacy programs for audio andim podcast advertising. Some of the key takeaways include: 1) Attention quality was highest for the audio ad that had the highest voiceover volume (36%) as opposed to the ad that had the lowest voiceover volume (27%) and the ad that had too many competing elements within the creative (25%); 2) 75% of participants reported a good quality audio ad positively influences their consideration to purchase a product; and 3) The inclusion of multiple competing audio components elements within an audio ad caused the ad to score lower in terms of overall quality than the ads without multiple competing elements. You can get the full report here.

Industry News

Pew Research: Majority of Podcasts Employ Guests

Pew Research Center says that according to its study of the podcast landscape focusing on analyzing guests featured on top-ranked shows, “most top-ranked podcasts in 2022 (76%) brought on at least one guest, with over 7,000 people appearing on these shows.” Other findings include: 1) Podcasts about certain topics tend to have guests more often, including top-ranked sports (100%), entertainment (85%)im and politics (78%) shows. In addition, 89% of news-focused podcasts (across topics) brought on at least one guest in 2022; 2) Most podcasts aren’t bringing the same guests on over and over. More than 99% of all guests only appeared once on any top podcast in 2022. In addition, about half (49%) of top podcasts brought on at least one guest more than once, and 23% hosted more than five different people more than once. The most common guests represent a range of professional backgrounds, including entertainment figures, scientists, journalists and political commentators. Pew senior computational social scientist Galen Stocking comments, “Our research has shed light on the variety of topics and approaches within the podcasting landscape. Here, we found that most top-ranked podcasts are bringing on guests, and often from a wide range of professional backgrounds. This can add to the perspectives heard on each podcast.”

Industry News

TALKERS News Notes

Audacy announces the launch of “One Handshake Away: Peter Bogdonavich & The Icons of Cinema,” a seven-part limited-run series featuring Academy Award-nominated director, writer, actor, producer, critic, and film historian Peter Bogdanovich in conversation with some of the greatest directors past and present including Orson Welles, Greta Gerwig, Quentin Tarantino, and Alfred Hitchcock from both new and never-before-heard archival interviews.

BIN: Black Information Network and iHeartMedia announce “Black Land,” a new podcast that will “look into the lives of ordinary people and bring to life their extraordinary tales of triumph and circumstance through the lens of community.” Hosted by Emmy-award winning, BIN: Black Information Network journalist Vanessa Tyler, the new series will dive deep into uncharted stories and give an overdue and deserving voice to those who have often experienced the other side of the American dream. Tony Coles, president, BIN: Black Information Network, says, “These stories are not just important – they are essential. We will continue to use this platform to amplify marginalized voices, foster understanding and contribute to a more inclusive, understanding, and compassionate world.”

Industry News

Audacy and Veritonic Renew Relationship

Audacy and audio analytics and research platform Veritonic announce they have renewed their partnership. Audacy SVP of research and insights Idil Cakim comments, “Measuring the impact of ourim total Audio campaigns — including radio, streaming and podcast advertising— with Veritonic allows us to show the power of Audacy’s content in connecting with audiences and mobilizing customers. We’re thrilled to continue our partnership and enable our clients and advertising partners to leverage audio to achieve the utmost in competitive edge, reach, and ROI.”

Industry News

“SportsRadio 610” in Houston Releases Contributor John McClain

According to a report in the Houston Chronicle, longtime pro football writer and broadcaster John McClain – who retired from the Chronicle in 2022 – is being let go from his role with Audacy’s sportsim talk KILT-AM “SportsRadio 610.” McClain’s role with the station included appearing on the station’s programs, writing stories for its website and co-hosting a podcast with station personality Sean Pendergast. The 72-year-old McClain tells the Chronicle that he’s not ready to leave the Houston radio market, adding, “I’ll see if people are interested. I’m a free agent now.” Read the Chronicle story here.

Industry News

FOX Sports’ Jay Glazer Rebrands “Unbreakable” Podcast

Sports media personality and FOX NFL insider Jay Glazer is rebranding his iHeartRadio original podcast, “Unbreakable.” “Unbreakable with Jay Glazer: A Mental Health Podcast” is now “Unbreakableim with Jay Glazer: A Mental WEALTH Podcast” to better reflect the uplifting message of the program. Glazer says, “When we launched the podcast, it was really important to give words to what many of us are experiencing with our mental health. We led that charge, and after more than a year of conversations with leaders and champions in every field, we’re shifting to a focus on sharing personal stories of overcoming adversity, the tools people use to incur MENTAL WEALTH, and paths to success so we can help motivate, uplift and inspire even more people and help set them up to win.”

Industry News

TV and Radio Legend Charles Osgood Dies at 91

The broadcasting industry is mourning Charles Osgood, who passed away on Tuesday (1/23) at his home in New Jersey at age 91 after a battle with dementia. Osgood spent 45 years of his broadcasting career at CBS News, hosting the iconic “CBS Sunday Morning” program from 1994 through 2016.im During his CBS career, he appeared on every CBS News program including “CBS Morning News,” the “CBS Evening News with Dan Rather” and the “CBS Sunday Night News.” For almost 46 years he produced his nationally syndicated radio feature, “The Osgood File,” from which he signed off with his signature phrase, “I’ll see you on the radio.” As Osgood was preparing to retire from “CBS Morning News” in 2016, he was a guest on TALKERS magazine founder Michael Harrison’s podcast. You can listen to that program here. Also, TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian – then serving as special features editor for Inside Radio – had the opportunity to profile Osgood. You can read that here.

Industry News

Clay Travis & Buck Sexton Produce New Election Coverage Podcast

Premiere Networks announces the launch of “24,” a weekly election coverage podcast hosted by Clayim Travis and Buck Sexton. The show debuted yesterday (1/14) and will be available as part of The Clay Travis & Buck Sexton Podcast Network. Premiere says, “‘24’ is a highlight reel of that week’s most important election news from ‘The Clay Travis and Buck Sexton Show’ – one of the leading talk radio shows in America reaching millions of listeners on more than 470 stations nationwide. Whether it’s astute political analysis or candidate interviews, ‘24’ is a curated sampling of Travis and Sexton’s comprehensive coverage of the week in politics.”

Industry Views

Pending Business: Ad Count

By Steve Lapa
Lapcom Communications Corp
President

imHow many times will we research the same subject and come to the same conclusion?

This time it is the podcast. How many ads will the average listener consider “appropriate” in a 60-minute episode?

If you read the recent research from Cumulus/Signal Hill, you know the answer. For the rest of you, survey says under four minutes per 60-minute episode. The same survey says the magic number for a 30-minute episode is under three.

How ironic is that? The typical talk radio hour runs more ads in one break than an entire 60-minute episode of a podcast. Could it be because we have been integrating radio commercials into hour-long broadcast content for over 100 years? Have we conditioned news/talk listeners to accept more commercials per hour? Our TV friends have been at for over 80 years with an even bigger hourly spot load. Anyone ever see audience research that says add more commercials?

Seriously, unless you pay for the ad-free experience of Netflix, HBO, Hulu, Spotify, Pandora, etc., like most consumers of media, you are comfortable with the ad-supported media model.

So, how has the podcast world been so successful with a model that would leave most traditional radio and TV owners, execs, and sellers dumbfounded.

Here is some insight from my experience.

1) CPM is higher in podcast. The hard facts are when you work with higher CPM you can adjust the commercial load. Demand for digital/social media and podcasts with marketable scale is greater than terrestrial radio. The demand curve for podcast advertising is greater than terrestrial radio. Time to wake up, shake up and shout out loud about our 100-year-old sleepy giant!

2) Survey said 62% of podcast listeners prefer the host read. Talk radio sellers should improve this pitch every day. Today, podcast sellers are simply better at it. Podcast sellers get the intimate relationship between host and listener better than most radio sellers get host and audience. Podcast hosts seem more one-on-one savvy. What will Joe Rogan’s next guest say? What will we hear when your talk talent interviews their next guest?

3) Quality. When your local production director is overloaded and needs to get commercials completed on the air yesterday, what wins: quantity or quality? Be honest here. Where is the next audio creative genius like Dick Orkin or Chuck Blore? Do you know those names?

4) Can you really compare ad load levels between the 60- or 30-minute podcast episode to the average three-hour daily talk radio show?

Traditional molds need to be revisited regularly. My experience with YouTube is showing me even newer models for monetization, different from audio podcasts. Does your 2024 planner have any room for innovation?

Steve Lapa is the president of Lapcom Communications Corp. based in Palm Beach Gardens, FL. Lapcom is a media sales, marketing, and development consultancy. Contact Steve Lapa via email at: Steve@Lapcomventures.com.